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Codex Atlanticus, foglio 93r


The Harpsichord-Viola is a portable instrument that can be worn with leather straps fastened to the back of the sound box. Once it is worn, the player ties his foot to a lever and begins to walk, providing power to a complex motor apparatus.

Inside the soundbox, because of the movement of the player's leg, a horsehair, or more simply a continuous tape, moves nonstop, and the musician with both hands free can perform polyphonic music pieces for several voices.
This design comes from the analysis of two musical instruments, from which Leonardo tries to remove the critical features while capturing the best features: the harpsichord and the viola, hence the name Clavi-Viola.
L3 Collection
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